He came, he did nothing except conquer the hearts of his party workers. What popats it made the ED and their boss man, Motabhai look. That afterthought of an email sent to Pawarful was like the grandfather of tubelight, man. By which time trains and trucks full of angry young men had hit the road for Mumbai.
Unlike the rowdy ranks of the sons-of-the-soil parties, women and youth of this party of rural Maharashtra enjoyed themselves outside the ED office at Ballard Pier. Then the police chief went to request the Maratha Pawarful leader to cancel visit to ED, such last-minute taagad-dhinna, I tell you. Needlessly they worried, the man then zipped off to survey the flood-affected areas in Pune, leaving the Big Jhol Party to face taunts. He did not even have any clue what his family members are upto. Whaddya know, the ferocious Ajit, who had once asked villagers if he should pee in the dam to fill it, actually shed water, from his eyes. Rubbed eyes with both thumbs, awww, even his worst critics gulped and sat stunned, smirkless. That is quite an achievement.
Talking of politics, suddenly one tame cub roared, you heard or what? Shee, don’t call it a squeak, so mean. Yes, he says, he will stand from Worli. So much to keep that municipality, I tell you. But he can’t see the potholes on the roads and holes on the footpaths. Well, how can he? There are no footpaths only. And now in the tree-filled dividers there is one foot of space for pedestrians. This city is for cars, may be they should have human-less cars and parking. Wait, this tech we already have. Most times, one can’t tell whether it is a human or monster behind the wheel.
Have you also noticed, how slowly we pedestrians are being pushed, Trishanku-like, skyward in Mumbai? Arre, you don’t believe me, kya? First they tried to send us underground. The subways had terrible security issues and people seem to be superstitious about going underground. Think they are going to hell or something. So then we were elevated to skywalks. Suspended thus, we are still closer to jannat, I suppose.
Became such a paradise for couples and other sorts. Before you know, the tiles began to loosen, roofs began to leak, ready to dispatch us straight to heaven. In this interim period, we got something called the monorail.
Now, this is actually a huge time- and money-saving mode of transport. Its first phase was a flop, but otherwise, you can go from Arthur Road to Chembur in 40 minutes, for Rs 40. Absolutely not bad. Except, the monorail has some nice, deep curves, rather like those of yesteryears’ Silk Smitha. So, this monorail often goes phut, god swear, very often it is shut.
It has caught fire, suffered technical snags and mostly during the rains, the rakes slip, and once, it toppled. Ever since, I have had nightmares of being left hanging 100 feet in the air. So, last week, it took me 40 minutes to go from downtown to Arthur Road and the same amount of time above the city, to reach Chembur. This air-conditioned monorail swerved so wildly as it navigated some deep turns, at one time I feared, my being on the same side of the turn would make the coach toppling easier. Scared to bits by possibly being the cause of damage, I ran to the middle of the coach, hoping to balance the pressure. It seems to have worked for me.
Can’t say how others would feel. I hope such won’t be the case with the underground metro.
This straight shooter likes to tell it as it is.